Mesut Ozil visits Jordan, plays football with Syrian Refugees

Published May 18th, 2016 - 10:22 GMT
Source: @TheAFDP
Source: @TheAFDP

Young football fans at the world's second largest refugee camp of Zaatari had the opportunity today to dribble the ball with football superstar Mesut Ozil, midfielder of both the German National Team and Arsenal FC.

Syrian boys and girls under the age of 13 who participate in regular football tournaments inside Zaatari were thrilled to witness the international football idol make a surprise appearance during a football festival on Wednesday morning.

Rania Juneidi, a 12-year-old Syrian refugee and an Arsenal fan expressed her gratitude to Ozil for his visit, "I passed the ball to Ozil himself and he gave me a high five, this is the best day of my life," she said.

The festival was organized by the Asian Football Development Project (AFDP) which has been running various football and social development programs in and around the camp in Northern Jordan since 2012, employing the sport as a platform for education, strengthening social cohesion and bringing back a sense of normalcy in the lives of refugees and host-communities.

The AFDP is a non-profit youth commission that focuses its needs-based support on promoting social development through football across Asia, with a special emphasis on grassroots and youth development, advancing women’s football and empowering women, as well as protecting and developing the game.

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